Happy Monday, folks. This week’s anti-MLM topic is craft fairs. Yes, if MLM huns aren’t infiltrating Facebook pages and Instagram DMs, they are also taking spots from actual craft makers via small-town craft fairs.
Being active on the anti-MLM subreddit, another theme I have noticed besides profiting off of tragedies and making baseless health and income claims is MLM huns portraying as small business owners (I mean, they do that when it’s convenient) in order to secure a spot at their hometown’s annual craft fairs.
For this week’s edition, I will be giving my reaction to 10 posts from Reddit that highlights this problem.
First, though, I want to turn the attention to a guest post on the MLM Truth blog about MLM and craft fairs. The post started off with the guest poster, who owns a small business and participates in these craft fairs, boldly stating that MLM reps don’t make their own products, they don’t own trademarks, and they don’t have any type of business license. Considering that most people pay for a starter pack to join one of these companies, this tracks.
The post also dived into the reasons why MLM huns show up at craft fairs despite the lack of craftiness required. One reason could be that the organizer has been involved in it themselves or has friends who are involved. Another could be ignorance. Maybe it’s not the right term, but sometimes organizers have no clue what MLM companies are and think they’re small businesses. Others know about the risks that come with hosting MLM reps and try to find a middle ground.
Reading further, some actual small business owners are coming together to promote their handmade products and to talk about their experience while people who are expecting all-handmade craft fairs just stop coming. Savy Writes Book, a YouTuber who runs a small business and does anti-MLM content, and someone I follow on there, did a video 3 years ago on this and I think I’ll leave it here below.
Okay, now let’s get to the posts
1. Targeting a 7-year-old girl for lipstick
2. More leggings aren’t always better
3. When odds are stacked against you
4. Wow, this seems legit /s
5. The question speaks for itself on this one
6. Dude stands up for wife vs MLMs at craft fairs
7. “Un”popular Opinion
8. No direct sales businesses allowed
9. I have to share booth space with a hun?
There are probably other examples, but I want to showcase 10 of them so as to not clog this post too much, but they do show it’s a problem and organizers should find a way to differentiate actual small business owners from MLMs, or else people won’t do it. If you have been to a craft fair and came across an MLM product there, drop me a comment below
Welcome back to another anti-MLM post. This week, we’ll be reacting to MLM posts about using tragedy and death to shill for products. Yes, that’s right. If using brainwashing tactics, emotional manipulation, and dangling the lifestyle over the heads isn’t enough, they will also use the tragedy of tragedies and the saddest of deaths to promote the product. Sometimes, they’ll promote the company as a whole.
When you think about the point where there should be a bottom… there isn’t one. I don’t think my trying to explain it would do justice, so I’m putting together 10 Reddit posts that encompass this “activity”. My reactions are in each caption.
1. The way this fits is just no
2. September 11th nails????
3. No, we are not doing the military like this
4. Essential oils as an answer to breathing? Really?
5. Got hit by Hurricane Ian? Monat can help /s
6. Dad died. Here’s my business
7. Imagine having a sale on the anniversary of your friend’s death (or heavenly birthday)
8. I’m sure she needs those after a fire
9. This makes Travis Scott look like a saint, and that’s a practically low bar to not cross
10. No length of time is too soon for a sale
These are the 10 posts I wanted to react to that fit the theme. I think each post showcased here has different scenarios going on, but they all come to the same conclusion — taking advantage of tragedy, personal or not, to promote their business, or to have some special that “honors” but completely misses the mark
Happy Monday. This is another anti-MLM post, so if you’re looking for previous posts pertaining to the aspects of the Multi Level Marketing business model, I have an entire category dedicated to my main passion for this blog.
This week I’m looking forward to writing about it because this one, I believe, is one of the main components of the so-called MLM lifestyle aesthetic, and that is the free stuff they always promote to get people to join their companies. They always talk about having time freedom and financial freedom and the freedom to work from anywhere, but in this post, we’re gonna explore those free trips and free cars that were always promoted as perks on joining an MLM
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Getting free trips and free company cars from your job sounds amazing on paper. You work hard enough to plan your vacations accordingly and if you have a company car, they either reimburse or pay entirely for gas and other maintenance. At least, that’s how MLM companies promote it. The truth is, though, there are a lot of catches. I wish I was exaggerating. We’ll be diving into the free car programs that some MLM companies promote as well as the free trips, and both come with some pricey catches
The general consensus on these free cars is that some of them require their cars to be of certain luxury quality, meaning they rather take Mercedes-Benz or Cadillac. Arbonne (white), Monat (also white), and Mary Kay (bluish-pink) require their cars to be a certain color and the decals to be in certain places (Arbonne requires their decals to be on the driver and passenger sides as well as the back). Monat requires their new Cadillacs to be less than 5 years of age at the time of signing.
All of them require that after you hit a certain rank (ex. Regional and National Vice President ranks in Arbonne, Market Mentor rank in Monat) you lease the car in your name and you must maintain the sales that got you there each month if you want to keep getting the bonuses. If you fail to make those ranks, they will usually rescind the rest of the bonuses which puts you on the hook for the whole payment, although Monat may give you two grace months. Even then, you shouldn’t count on them. The sales quotas are usually in the 10,000s mark for group volume, which is impossible to maintain monthly in these companies
MLM companies never put the bonuses on the entire monthly payments and it was done on purpose. It’s to keep you in and pressure you to make those sales so you can receive those bonuses. For example, Monat gives their Market Mentors a $500 bonus towards their Cadillacs, which usually covers half to a third of the monthly payment.
Besides Arbonne, Monat, and Mary Kay, other companies that have some sort of a free car program include Thrive/Le-Vel, FM World, Pruvit, and Nerium
Free trips work the same way as free cars. Although there are a lot of catches to it, the way it works is like those school fundraisers where students have to give away cookies in order to possibly win some prizes. In MLMs, huns usually have to sell a certain amount of products in hope of earning these trips that are supposedly paid for by the companies.
Just like the free cars, though, the huns are on the short end of the stick on these trips. Though I wasn’t able to find an article on MLM trips, these next few Reddit posts will paint a picture of what they actually are
In all, the cars and the trips are not free. Their MLM companies might chip in, but they will not give the entire bonus by design. The free stuff all comes with too many rules and none of them are in favor of the huns. However, they don’t see it, which is great for MLM companies. As long as more reps join in without heeding warnings, the free cars and the free trips would continue as long as the MLM companies are active
Happy Monday. Still recovering from Hurricane Ian, but at this point, I am in a good position to get things back on track. Enough about that, though. I have an interesting topic about multi-level marketing that I saw constantly when I was watching anti-MLM content during the pandemic.
We already know that MLM reps are called ‘huns’ because that’s usually how they greet their potential recruits. We have heard about cold messaging, which is what huns resort themselves to after tapping out their warm market. A warm market is their inner circle, like friends, family, and acquaintances. Once they tap out of it, they enter their cold market, which is full of complete strangers. We heard about huns not checking a profile beforehand when they send those “hey hun” messages to complete strangers — telling them they would be killing it in what they do. Even if they do check profiles, they will find something if they can solve it for a profit.
But one thing that is constant in this part of the topic is huns contacting their former classmates years after graduation. It didn’t even matter how long ago they went to school together… 1 year, 2 years, 5 years, even 10, 20, 25 years after graduation. If you’re from a small town, you might or might not have a message from a former classmate that claims to want to catch up with you in an effort to really pitch you an MLM opportunity.
I know you’re wondering where I’m heading with this, but before I get there, I will tell you that even though I haven’t gotten a “hey hun” message since graduating from high school 15 years ago, I have gotten invitations to join some friends’ pages on Facebook which turned out to be fronts for their MLM businesses. However, this isn’t what we’re focusing on.
I have noticed while scrolling in the anti-MLM subreddit, fellow Redditors have posted messages after messages of former school bullies who have contacted them about joining an MLM. We are talking about those who essentially peaked in high school (read: popular kids) who are still chasing that spotlight well into their 20s and 30s contacting their classmates whom they once hated to “link arms” with them in a business.
This will be a Reddit reaction post
The order in which I embedded these posts is not the same order in which I found them, but I wanted to start off with a hilarious starter pack post that sees some correlation between girls who peaked in high school and their MLM businesses. It features quotes such as “I run my own business” and “no chemicals” but it also includes a picture of a baby named “Westley”, a Facebook post that conveys a hun’s love for her “job” and a picture of a Younique credit card. Yeah, that’s a thing. Anyway, the following posts fit the bill almost to a T.
A Redditor made this post after watching an Instagram story from one of her former classmates that tried to explain the difference between a pyramid scheme and an MLM. While they do have the same characteristics, most MLM huns don’t make the most money unless they have a team. Basically, they combine the recruiting tactics of a pyramid scheme with a commission-based sales tactic with a few extra steps
Sometimes the former high school classmate is a victim of circumstance. In this instance, we have Molly, a Redditor who goes by “No-Veterinarian6652” who was being contacted by her former classmate who was in several MLMs. Scrolling to the comments section, I find a comment from Molly who answered another Redditor’s question about her ex-classmate joining Beachbody, in which she responded in part “She has two babies and is a SAHM and I know she is a target for MLMs. She was previously in YL and she never sent me a single message. I’m thinking she was doing the whole “causal” thing with YL and then some Beachbody coach reached out and now she’s getting whipped into shape. She went from posting about 5 stories/day on Instagram with YL to probably 30+ stories, makes reels, etc. with Beachbody.” Molly would go on to say that she’s been trying to get the hun out of MLMs to no avail
This next post is from a Redditor that had graduated from high school in 2017… 5 years ago. She had three classmates that were in different MLMs — the first is a Tupperware magazine, the second is all about It Works and their keto products, and the third is an Instagram profile of one of the Redditor’s former classmates who is with Younique. So why is she in this post? I scrolled down to the comments where the OP mentioned that one of the huns lied about getting pregnant their freshman year plus subsequent lies about being miscarried and getting an abortion to keep her boyfriend and also lied about her age to get a boy in trouble. The other two were just vulnerable and the OP even tried to get one out before the pandemic started. To that I say yikes
This last one is a satirical one, but I also think this drives it home. Someone posted a satirical article from a Canadian online news satire company called The Beaverton and going through the website, it’s basically a Canadian version of The Onion. In October 2016, they published this article about mean girls and pyramid schemes and they came up with the 90% line, which does seem like it. Although it’s probably not close to the real stats, whatever they may be, I just thought this was funny
In short, and don’t quote me on this one, but coming from a small town with not a lot of opportunities, it’s little wonder people move out of their hometowns to start their own journeys (and some do come back). For those that do stay in their hometowns, they could be suckered into an MLM just to provide for their families.
Happy Monday, everyone. It’s time for another anti-MLM post. Read up my first three posts here, here, and here
I have mentioned that upon watching anti-MLM content for almost 3 years that hunbots, hunbros, and other MLM reps love to use manipulation tactics to get people to join their teams. They know they can’t sell the products by themselves and some know they joined the company by their uplines using the same tactics, but they do it anyway.
For this week’s anti-MLM post, I will tell you the manipulation tactics I have seen after watching years of anti-MLM content
When you join an MLM, the other reps under the same upline will shower you with lots of love. Sometimes too much love. That is called love bombing. They do this to make you feel welcomed and appreciated. They make you feel like you have a sisterhood. They make you feel like you’re part of a team. They even shout women empowerment at the top of their lungs. But that love doesn’t last. The love bombing and toxic positivity go out the window when you’re falling behind in making money for them
MLM reps play a long game of deception. They will post their so-called “free” cars or pictures from their “free” trips. They would also post about buying a house with their “money” or telling their followers that they were able to pay for expensive items and medical surgeries with their MLM money that they somehow couldn’t get with a regular job. Money isn’t the only motivator, as they could also claim that they feel lighter, more focused, and have more energy with their products. I will make a post about the “free” stuff they get in a later post (SPOILERS: They’re not free). The Huffington Post talks more about the art of deception from a former Mary Kay hun
People don’t have extra money lying around to buy starter packs to run a “small business” with an MLM company for a good reason. For those that are already in, they usually don’t make enough money to buy into the products monthly to keep their accounts active or to hit the next rank for the month. Their uplines, however, feed off of their downlines, so if they don’t see enough money coming in, they would yell at their downlines essentially to make them more money. An example of that is a video from Julie Jo and it’s about a top Monat rep yelling at her downline because they are not bringing her the money (warning: bullying, essentially)
MLM companies love to target moms. It didn’t matter what type of mom they targeted… soon-to-be mothers, first-time mothers, pregnant mothers, single mothers, stay-at-home mothers, military mothers, moms with empty nests, etc. They usually attract them because they are either pregnant with a child or have young children and need some income while staying home. They will advertise their scam as a way for a mom to be present for their kids or as a way to keep up with their kids’ schedules. You’re probably wondering “where does the mom shaming come in”? It comes in when moms put them in daycare. Daycare is seen as an antithesis of being a “present” mom. They see it as someone raising someone else’s kid, but in reality, it’s like any other school. Speaking of, some don’t like public schools either for the same reason and will homeschool them for the sake of being a “present” mom to their kids. However, the mom shaming go beyond just present for the kids.
Whether they’re a mom or not, body shaming is another manipulation tactic especially deployed by wellness MLM reps to bully their downline. They will use fatphobic terms like fat and ugly to reem them for not making enough money or losing weight to their liking. If they couldn’t do it to the faces, they would also do it online, especially when they lose a downline member. Another form of body shaming is when they appropriate those before and after pictures and say something like “getting rid of curves” or “getting rid of cellulite”, two things that are being accepted in today’s body positivity culture.
Fear of missing out (FOMO)
Looking for a certain number of people. Holding conventions. Building curiosity. Spamming the timelines of their followers with materialistic things. All of that creates FOMO, the fear of missing out. They’re always looking for 3 more people to join their downlines (and may have a discount on their starter packs if necessary). They will hold in-person, packed conventions where the top leaders and those who hit certain top ranks get to walk the stage as if they had graduated from college and give unnecessary motivational speeches that would last hours. They also love to build curiosity by pretending to ask people if they are looking to change their lives and spamming their unfortunate followers by posting the glamorous “lifestyle” they spew all the time. During COVID, MLM companies insisted on holding in-person conventions without precautions after the vaccines have rolled out, and it sometimes leads to deadly consequences. (Paparazzi Convention 2021 reaction. SPOILERS: COVID deaths, the lack of mask and vaccine measures in place, and it gets worse)
Claiming to be anti-MLM
I won’t dive too much into it but just know this… just like people who love to say “I used to be a Democrat until they started being mean” or those who say “I’m not racist, but…”, “I’m not homophobic, but”, “I’m not sexist, but”, there are MLM reps that say that they used to be anti-MLM until they saw some vision from their upline or something. To me, they weren’t anti-MLM. If they were, they would find the problem with the overall structure of the business model and never join. It’s not limited to one company. Keep that in mind when you watch an MLM video.
The last tactic is gaslighting. Making their downlines feel like shit. Blaming them for “not working hard enough”. Replacing the actual reality with an alternative reality. Sowing doubt by telling them their eyes deceived them. Top MLM reps especially use this tactic to keep their downlines in check if even one of them starts to question them.
Those are some of the tactics they use to manipulate their teams into doing their bidding. What do you think? Do you know of any other tactics they might have used? Let me know in the comments